The A's season is over. The minor league season is over. The AFL is over. This is a sad time for baseball fans, and with Beane's recent comments that the A's likely will not make a big splash (or even a little tiny splash) in the free agent market this year, it looks like it will be a long winter with very little news for A's fans.
Having said that, I saw an interesting blurb on mlbtraderumors.com last night [see what I did there, Larry David/Curb Your Enthusiasm fans?]. All the piece said was that the A's, Mariners, Rays and Yankees were interested in Cuban defector Noel Arguelles, a left-handed pitcher. Never heard of him, so I did some research.
First of all, the blurb on MLBTR mentions the A's were among the teams interested, but the article focuses on the A's interest in the 19-year old. Forst and Beane both met with Arguelles recently on a trip to the Dominican. The article has almost no information on him other than he's 6'3", ~200 pounds, that he impressed scouts in a recent workout, and that he figures to receive a contract similar to Dayan Viciedo and Jose Iglesias, somewhere in the range of $8-10MM.
Here is a quote from Baseball America:
"It's a three-quarters slot with a clean stroke," the scout said. "He's very intriguing." Another scout said Arguelles reminded him in some ways of Twins lefty Francisco Liriano." [The article also said] Arguelles has impressed with his work ethic
Here is a quote from Baseball Prospectus:
"Arguelles is considered a better prospect than Iglesias, as a left hander standing 6’3, tipping the scales at 210 lbs., and hitting 93 mph with his fastball. Arguelles has a solid curveball, changeup, and command, along with a recently-added slider that some scouts say has quickly become his best off-speed pitch. Some scouts saw him sitting at 88 mph recently and said Arguelles was out of shape, but other clubs have recently watched him hit 91 mph and say his body isn’t a big concern. Every team I’ve spoken with is comfortable with his talent, given his consistent international performances. Executives agree that Arguelles would have been a late first rounder or sandwich pick in the recent draft, if he entered the draft rather than become a free agent."
Also in the article is that there were some rumors that Arguelles might not be 19 like he said, but of course this isn't an uncommon problem with international prospects.
Here is the only video I could find of him, but he does look pretty athletic, and his windup does look fairly smooth.
It's not that I'm claiming the A's are frontrunners for Arguelles, but like I said, this appears to be shaping up to be a very slow off-season, so I figured I would put together a little something about a player that probably isn't well known. The A's were rumored to be interested, but the Yankees figure to be in the lead for in the Aroldis Chapman sweepstakes, but if Arguelles fell into A's hands, it wouldn't be too bad a consolation prize.
Anyways, here is where you all discuss it. Would you rather they spend the money on the "traditional" free agents? A third basemen perhaps?